You wouldn’t jump into a rigorous workout without a quick warmup. However, many gym-goers forgo a post-exercise cool-down routine in the name of hitting the locker room and bouncing out, especially those squeezing in an after-work session who are eager to get home and unwind already.

No matter the length or challenge level of your gym time, avoid suddenly halting all movement as soon as you hop off the treadmill. Even while you’re chugging your water bottle, it’s important to slow your heart rate gradually to avoid dizziness and fainting. Factoring in hot summer weather, take extra care to re-regulate your body temperature to its resting level. A minimum of five minutes spent doing any of the following activities is all it takes to go the extra mile for your muscles.

1. Walk it out

Whether you prefer laps around the track or a post-run neighborhood stroll, walking takes your pace down a few notches while keeping the blood flowing. A steady decrease in movement keeps blood from pooling in your lower body, which can lead to lightheadedness.

2. Stretch (Again)

You’ve already primed your workout with a set of stretches — now bring it full circle with a wrap-up session. Your muscles are most susceptible to stretching once they’ve had the chance to warm up throughout your spin class, run, or time in the weight room. Regular stretching, both before and after each workout, can help prevent injury in the long run.

3. Suit up

Pack your swimsuit and hit the nearest pool (or lake… after all, Seattle is within miles of several) for a refreshing dip that doubles as a low-impact exercise. A few laps is all it takes!

4. Hit the mat

A major perk of a Flow Fitness membership is our comprehensive schedule of trainer-led classes, from advanced high-intensity sessions to our restorative Deep Stretch yoga class. Join today to release muscle tension, improve posture and flexibility, and practice mindful breathing, simultaneously de-stressing mind and muscles following your full access to our machine and amenity packed facilities.

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